Exclusive: "Nicki Minaj Makes It Look Easy But It's Not"
Tuesday, Jan 18, 2011 1:35PM
As Young Money's Nicki Minaj embarks upon a new path for female emcees, SOHH recently spoke to Dipset A&R Duke Da God to find out if they are looking to recruit any lady rhyme spitters.
Despite Minaj's buzz and record-selling capabilities, Duke said not all female artists can easily reach the Barbie's high level.
"With the females, it's kinda hard," Duke told SOHH when asked about giving Minaj some feminine competition. "You gotta find somebody that's attractive to the eye but can write her own music. Nicki Minaj, man, she's a phenom. That's why I have a respect for artistry because Nicki makes it look easy but it's not. That's why I have a lot of respect for dope artists like Prince or even like a Ne-Yo. Nicki and them get in and make it look easy. I just think if the talent comes across my desk or my e-mail, I'm gonna know it. It's so hard. It's not as much talent as you think. People aren't always as talented and you think they are. In my opinion, Nicki Minaj is a blessing." (SOHH)
Although skeptical of acquiring female talent, Duke recently told SOHH he is always on the prowl for artists.
"I'm definitely looking for new talent," Duke told SOHH about recruiting new artists. "I'm always looking for talent. Araab Muzik, I've been working with him for the past four or five years but I had to find him too. I have A-Mafia, working with him. Artists just have to e-mail me and I check every e-mail that hit my inbox. The first 30 seconds will determine if I'm going to listen to the whole sh*t. Artists have to remember to send me quality, not quantity, with their records. You can send it to [email protected] I check it religiously and music doesn't go into my inbox without me checking it. Justin Bieber could have sent me something, anybody. I don't miss out on opportunities. And we're definitely looking to build up and get ready for the future. I'm looking for young artists, not old artists. It's all good, but I'm looking for young artists." (SOHH)
Last May, Def Jam's Senior VP of A&R Sha Money XL told SOHH how much pressure Minaj has placed upon female rappers.
"Nicki Minaj has set the bar so high that whoever the new female rappers is, and I've heard one or two females so far, they're horrible. I'm real hard on female rappers, seriously. I ain't with the bullsh*t, don't come too hard, you gotta be sexy and look like Nicki Minaj and sh*t. She got it. I don't know about that Sean Garrett record, but she's got it. That record ain't it, she's supposed to come harder than that. That sh*t ain't it." (SOHH Guest Star)
To date, Minaj's Pink Friday debut album has sold over 890,000 records.
Leading the pack this week is Young Money rapper Nicki Minaj's Pink Friday which sold 38,600 records behind Taylor Swift's Speak Now (52,000). According to Nielsen SoundScan, the Barbie's debut album rests at 890,500 sold copies after seven weeks in stores. (SOHH Sales Wrap)
Check out a recent Nicki Minaj interview below: